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Then was he turnd into a snowy Swan,
To win faire Leda to his lovely trade :
From scorching heat her daintie limbes to shade;
Then shewd it how the Thebane Semelee,
Armd with his thunderbolts and lightning fire,
Three nights in one, they say, that for her sake He then did put, her pleasures lenger to partake. Twise was he seene in soaring Eagles shape,
And with wide winges to beat the buxome ayre: Once, when he with Asterie did scape; Againe, when as the Trojane boy so fayre He snatcht from Ida hill, and with him bare: Wondrous delight it was there to behould How the rude Shepheards after him did stare, Trembling through feare least down he fallen should, And often to him calling to take surer hould.
In Satyres shape Antiopa he snatcht;
"Lo! now the hevens obey to me alone, [gone." And take me for their Jove, whiles Jove to earth is
And thou, faire Phoebus, in thy colours bright
To love fair Daphne, which the[e] loved lesse ; Lesse shee thee lov'd then was thy just desart, Yet was thy love her death, and her death was thy smart. So lovedst thou the lusty Hyacinct;
So lovedst thou the faire Coronis deare; Yet both are of thy haplesse hand extinct, Yet both in flowres doe live, and love thee beare, The one a Paunce, the other a sweet breare: For griefe whereof, ye mote have lively seene The God himselfe rending his golden heare, And breaking quite his garlond ever greene, With other signes of sorrow and impatient teene.
Both for those two, and for his owne deare sonne, 38
Who, bold to guide the charet of the Sunne,
And love a Shephards daughter for his dearest Dame.
He loved Isse for his dearest Dame,
And for her sake her cattell fedd a while,
Next unto him was Neptune pictured,
In his divine resemblance wondrous lyke:
They trembling stood, and made a long broad dyke, That his swift charet might have passage wyde Which foure great Hippodames did draw in temewise tyde.
His seahorses did seeme to snort amayne,
And from their nosethrilles blow the brynie streame,
Ne ought but deare Bisaltis ay could make him glad
And Aeolus faire daughter, Arne hight,
On whom he got faire Pegasus that flitteth in the ayre.
Next Saturne was, (but who would ever weene
That sullein Saturne ever weend to love?
That to a Centaure did him selfe transmove.
Long were to tell the amorous assayes,
And gentle pangues, with which he maked meeke The mightie Mars, to learne his wanton playes; How oft for Venus, and how often eek
For many other Nymphes, he sore did shreek ; With womanish teares, and with unwarlike smarts, Privily moystening his horrid cheeke:
There was he painted full of burning dartes, And many wide woundes launched through his inner partes.
Ne did he spare (so cruell was the Elfe)
His owne deare mother, (ah! why should he so?)
To shew Dan Cupids powre and great effort:
Of broken bowes and arrowes shivered short;
There was an Altar built of pretious stone Of passing valew and of great renowme, On which there stood an Image all alone Of massy gold, which with his owne light shone ; And winges it had with sondry colours dight More sondry colours then the proud Pavone Beares in his boasted fan, or Iris bright, [bright. When her discolourd bow she spreds through heven
Blyndfold he was; and in his cruell fist
A mortall bow and arrowes keene did hold,
Whose hideous tayle his lefte foot did enfold,
And underneath his feet was written thus,
Unto the Victor of the Gods this bee:
That wondrous sight faire Britomart amazd,
But ever more and more upon it gazd,
The whiles the passing brightnes her fraile sences dazd.
Tho, as she backward cast her busie eye
To search each secrete of that goodly sted,
But forward with bold steps into the next roome went.
Much fayrer then the former was that roome,
A thousand monstrous formes therein were made, Such as false love doth oft upon him weare;
For love in thousand monstrous formes doth oft appeare.